Bradford City Disability FC
Bradford City Disability FC
Home of all things disability at Bradford City FC

Community Volunteers - Player Profiles



Edward Hanson-Ratcliffe

My first experience of watching a professional football team play was at Bradford City AFC when I was about 8 years old and can remember being excited; thinking how big the ground was and how loud the crowd sounded. Funny I don’t remember who they were playing or if they won! After that we went a couple more times that season and the following one, but didn’t really get the Bantam bug till later. We even went to see Leeds United playing once and I don’t remember much about that game either!

I’ve always enjoyed playing football though find my confidence and communication difficulties cause me problems when joining in team play, but I have worked hard to overcome this, learning to keep focused and achieve new skills. School learning isn’t my strongest point and we soon realised I have learning difficulties too. My first school was a very small Primary school and fortunately, they needed football players, so I was picked for their team when the other larger schools only chose their very best players and these games were challenging. A friend’s mum mentioned Bradford Disability Football Club and I decided to join them in 2012 when I was 12 years old. This was the best decision and provides the opportunity to develop friendships more with other players and they have a playing level which suited my needs. I’m an attacking midfielder and winger, enjoying these positions on the field between defenders and forwards. Playing disability football helped me find this position, being a beginner when I started and wasn’t move around much. Now I like to get on the ball and run with it as well. My favourite situation is a 1v1 out wide. I like to get crosses in and I can chip in with goals as well. I enjoy everything from their training sessions, to competing at league games, the coaches and trips are great too, but also their involvement with Bradford City AFC. I started regularly watching the home matches, sitting with my disability friends and having the fantastic opportunity to play on the pitch at half time. This season I became a volunteer with the Bradford Community Foundation team and I’m really enjoying this type of work which regularly is charity fundraising before matches. Hopefully, this will help to build my confidence and communication for future employment too. My dream job is to play for Bradford City AFC.  

During the best season that I have seen for Bradford City AFC 2012/13, I became very ill, which meant long periods in hospital and missing the Wembley matches. I was so please that the team was doing well, but very disappointed that I couldn’t be there to see it. We couldn’t even get a signal to listen in the Bone Marrow Units and mum on more than one occasion had to pull me back into the isolation room, convincing me that I needed to stay. These were the longest days, waiting for family to call with the scores!

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Team Supported:Bradford City FC

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